Scanning codes

Scanning bar codes became very popular. I already found three applications that get good use of scanning codes.

Grocery iQ

Grocery iQ is a social shopping list on which items can be put manually or by scanning bar codes. It has features like sharing the shopping list with others, organize by store, get coupons for products on the list, etc.

I can envision people doing groceries with a phone. Imagine when products will have RFIDs and when we will pass by an aisle with a product on our shopping list a phone will warn us. Imagine the phone automatically scanning similar products’ RFIDs and suggest the best price. Imagine collaborative mapping (crowdsourcing) of grocery stores (similar to OpenStreetMap) and knowing where exactly are products on our list. Before even entering the store a phone will have the optimum walking path drawn for us (I hate shopping in enormous stores but I like their lower prices). 

Delicious Library

Delicious library is a cataloging software for books, movies, music, software, toys, tools, electronics, & video games. Scanning a code will find a product on the web and put in in our library. The feature list is too long but it allows sharing, categorizing, checking out, etc.

It reminds me of a product I did a prototype of 6 years ago. I thought of putting all person’s files (documents, photos, etc.) on shelves (maybe with a treemap algorithm where importance would play a scaling factor instead of file size). Importance would be calculated by number of accesses, time when added to a file hierarchy and by users (something like thumbs up and down as used on YouTube). But rectangles would look like shelves with thumbnails to make it familiar to the physical world. The shelves would have to be decently static to allow users to adopt to and remember spatial position of files. But my supervisor at the time told me that shelves on a PC would look like driving a car with a riddle 🙂


Similar to DL is Booxter. Both also allows one to carry the whole digital library of physical things on an iPhone.


Sixthsense envisioned the future of reviews from the web. But thinking of it, the technology already exists to achieve this today without special wearable computing. It might be that such application (scan a barcode and application searchers the web to provide reviews, features and  …) already exists for smart phones. I probably just don’t know of it.